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Legislative Update for May 24, 2013

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IRS Targets Adoptive Families: In the deal Congress struck with President Obama at the beginning of the year to avert the fiscal cliff, the adoption tax credit was restored and made permanent.Despite this, CWALAC recently learned that the IRS responded by targeting with audits the very families Congress wanted to help. In 2012, the IRS requested additional information from 90 percent of returns claiming the adoption tax credit.It is despicable that the IRS has targeted vulnerable families for its own political purposes. CWALAC is continuing to meet with Hill staff to offer our assistance as needed.Interestingly, at an Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing earlier this week, Lois Lerner, IRS Director of Exempt Organizations, submitted her testimony and then proceeded to plead the 5th, so she did not have to answer questions from the Committee. It’s ironic, isn’t it, how easy it is ignore the Constitution until you need to use it as a shield?

Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act: This week Rep. Trent Franks’ (R-Arizona) Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice held a hearing on his bill, H.R. 1797, the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.Among the witnesses testifying at this hearing were Jill Stanek, a long-time friend of CWA and tireless advocate for life, and Dr. Anthony Levatino, a former “pro-choice obstetrician” who had a change of heart after he lost his daughter in a car accident.Dr. Levatino’s testimony was particularly revealing in regards to the pain these babies in the womb face.Please thank Reps. Franks, Bob Goodlatte (R-Virginia), Steve King (R-Iowa), Louie Gohmert (R-Texas), and Steve Chabot (R-Ohio) for accentuating the need to prohibit abortions after 20 weeks, when babies’ pain receptors are fully developed.To find their contact information, please click here.

Conscience Mandate: This week, the 7th and 10th Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral arguments in the Grote and Hobby Lobby cases opposing being forced to violate their religious convictions to subsidize abortion-inducing drugs for their employees or being subjected to a punitive fine. Please meet with your representative on H.R. 940, the Health Care Conscience Rights Act, when he/she returns to the district the week of May 27. Ask him/her to talk to House leadership to have this legislation included on any must-pass bill.Your help on this is critical. House leadership has told us this is not a priority, because they are not hearing from Members of Congress. In order to make this a priority, your representative needs to take action now! For more information, click here to read CWA’s statement, and click here to read CWALAC’s alert.


Israel’s Right to Self-Defense: Our country must recognize the threat a nuclear Iran would pose, especially to that of our friend and ally, Israel. CWALAC recognizes this threat and continues to support Israel and its right to self-defense.

That’s why CWALAC supported S. Res. 65, which would reaffirm the United States’ support for Israel and enforce sanctions on Iran. The resolution was adopted Wednesday night by a vote of 99-0. Click here to see how your senator voted.

For more details, click here to read CWALAC’s letter to the Senate.

IRS Scandal: This week, Chairman of the Finance Committee Max Baucus (D-Montana) and Ranking Member Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) sent a letter to acting-IRS Commissioner Steve Miller, asking the agency questions related to the IRS targeting conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status. Miller and former-IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman testified before the Finance Committee on Tuesday.

Concerned Women for America was also targeting in the 90’s by the IRS, click here to read CWA’s press statement.

CRPD: The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), which failed to get the 67 votes needed last December to be ratified, is likely to be considered again in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Americans should make laws for America. The United Nations CRPD treaty would take away many rights laid out to American citizens within our own constitution.

Immigration: The Senate Judiciary Committee approved the immigration bill Tuesday night.

Chairman Leahy (D-Vermont) withheld his amendment on “same-sex” couples for fear of derailing the entire bill, although he could still try and bring two possible proposals up on the Senate floor.

One is based on the Uniting American Families Act, which would allow American citizens in “committed same-sex relationships” to sponsor foreign partners for green cards. The other, would exempt immigration law from the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, which is currently being considered before the Supreme Court of the United States.